The surname of BURNER was derived from the Old English BURNA - dweller by the stream - at the burn. Local names usually denoted where a man held his land, and indicated where he actually lived.
Early records of the name meniton Godric at Burnai of the County of Kent in 1044. Walter Bournere was recorded in the City of London in 1318. John de Bourne of the County of Somerset was documented in the year 1327. Robert atte-borne was the rector of Ingworth, County Norfolk in 1360. Edward Bourne of Yorkshire, was listed in the Yorkshire Poll Tax of 1379. William Bourne and Agnes Johnson were married in London in the year 1618. Edward Burne and Susanna Basile were married at St. George's, Hanover Square, London in 1754.
At first the coat of arms was a practical matter which served a function on the battlefield and in tournaments. With his helmet covering his face, and armour encasing the knight from head to foot, the only means of identification for his followers, was the insignia painted on his shield and embroidered on his surcoat, the flowing and draped garment worn over the armour. During the Middle Ages, when people were unable to read or write, signs were needed for all visual identification. For several centuries city streets in Britain were filled with signs of all kinds, public houses, tradesmen and even private householders found them necessary. This was an age when there were no numbered houses, and an address was a descriptive phrase that made use of a convenient landmark. At this time, coats of arms came into being, for the practical reason that men went into battle heavily armed and were difficult to recognise. It became the custom for them to adorn their helmets with distinctive crests, and to paint their shields with animals and the like. Coats of arms accompanied the development of surnames, becoming hereditary in the same way.
The associated arms are recorded in Sir Bernard Burkes General Armory. Ulster King of Arms in 1884.
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